So, I am already into March on spending my fabric budget. I was never good with budgets.
But I found some beautiful elephant fabric. I collect anything elephant. I also inherited my mom’s collection of elephants. I do not have a plan for this fabric yet, but I bought it and will let the ideas come later.

The clay elephant I made two weeks ago, survived the kiln, so I will be glazing it next week.

In pottery class this morning, I made a fat cat and a bird bowl. The bird looks more like an elephant right now. My instructor told me we may be able to add feathers on the head. In the photo, the bird is drying with his legs up. (It looks like he is dying…not drying.) I also had to repair the bunny I made last week. I did not attach one of the feet securely enough, so I had to do some bunny surgery.

Everyone else in class is making some beautiful, artistic bowls. I think I need to sign up for a second class and maybe I can move on from these animal bowls and sculptures.
My trip to Las Colchas was productive. In my project process, I noted that I would consult with my friend, Francine, who owns the quilt shop. She makes beautiful quilts and other things. I showed her my three ideas for finishing this quilt. She gave me some tips that helped me make my choice of the three. I also purchased three fat quarters to finish framing the cats. One of the cats is framed with a “fish” Kaffe Fassett fabric…a hidden quilt treasure.

My friend, Christine, suggested I frame the pet blocks in white polka-dot fabric that would bring the blocks together. Sandy, at Graybarn Designs agreed with Christine. It just so happened that I had white with black polk-dot fabric in my stash. So I will work on framing the blocks tomorrow. Thanks to Christine and Sandy!

Floral Pets: Day 2

There is so much information, and so many wonderful people in the blog world. For the past week or so, I had been stuck in the creating process. In my usual unorganized manner, I looked through Pinterest, viewed tutorials, pulled books and magazines…and got nowhere. Then I visited with quilters and associates at the Mesquite Bean Quilt Shop. I purchased the Floral Pets fabric, but still had no real plan. I just knew that I wanted to do something different than the free pattern.
That’s where Melanie McNeil enters the picture. I read her post, Project Process, and that was the jump start I needed. Each step of the process got me closer to visualizing what I wanted. I am now “executing chosen solutions”. Thank you, Melanie!


Yesterday’s Work

Today’s Work
The blocks are still not in final order. I have run out of Kaffe Fassett floral remnants, so, I guess I will be making another trip to a fabric store. 😉
Right now, it still looks pretty traditional. My plan is to jazz it up…somehow.
I need to repeat steps 1-3!

Something New

I have been trying to figure out what I want to do next.  I have a long “Someday” list, and I have been studying tutorials in preparation for some of these small quilting projects. It had been a while since I visited the Mesquite Bean, so I grabbed my shopping bag and headed out. I had some errands to run after a hectic morning, so I knew a trip to the fabric shop was just what I needed.
I knew that on Tuesdays, the store opens up the back room for a sew along. The shop was humming with activity, both in the store front and in the back room. I shopped around for some fat quarters, then I found two cute panels called Floral Pets.

One of the super helpful associates, Mechelle, told me that the ladies in the backroom were all making quilts with a pattern that used these panels. The pattern was designed by Mary Kay Davis for Thread on the Floor. It is a free pattern that can be found on Blend fabrics.
I meandered my way to the backroom and was immediately welcomed by all the quilters. What I found interesting, was that each person was working from the same pattern, yet each quilt was different. Some just made a dog house quilt. Some just made a cat in a basket quilt. Some made it wider, others made it longer. They used the same suggested fabric, but utilized it in different places. I apologized for being nosy and asking dumb questions. One of the quilters reassured me that there is no such thing as being nosy or asking dumb questions when talking with quilters. Each one shared their techniques for adjusting to the different sizes of the the individual panels. I also learned ways to problem solve other technicalities. When I said I was thinking of making a quilt using both the dog and the cats together, some of them said they wished they had thought of that.
The suggested coordinating fabrics are pretty, but they are a little too pastel for me. I held the panels next to some Kaffe Fassett floral and polka-dot prints. I loved the way the bold colors made the pastel floral pets pop out. I have some good remnants of the Kaffe Fassett polka dots, so I just bought some floral designs and some white and black polka-dot fabric. I am going to play around with this a bit.
It is so much fun to meet and share with other quilters. There is always something new to learn.

Fabric Flower Pins

My friend, Nancy, makes beautiful fabric pins. I am happy to be a recipient of some of the beautiful pins she has made. She lent me a book by Amy Barickman, Indygo Junctions Fabric Flowers. I need to get the book back to her, since I have had it for some time. Before I do, I am planning on sharing it with my Meemaw friends for the next project we will be making on our Wabi-Sabi Sunday. I hope to make one of the yo-yo  or the coiled flowers that are in the book. In the meantime, I had some scraps and decided to fool around with some ideas.
I had pieced Valentine fabric scraps to make a square. I backed it with light fusible batting. Then I cut the square into different sizes of hearts.  I stacked them and sewed right through the middle, adding a bead to stabilize the center. I backed it with flannel and sewed on the clasp in the same manner as Nancy does her pins. For the second flower, I followed the tutorial by Red Ted Art. This was not as simple as the tutorial made it out to be. I think I used a thread that was too thin for making the running stitch, so gathering the flower petals together did not go so smoothly. The last floral pin I made today was based on some fabric flower kits that I saw at Michaels.
The fabric flowers in this kit were already cut. I thought I could do the same with some scraps. So, I pulled out some Kaffe polka-dot scraps that I had and cut out some circles. I decided to use pinking shears to cut the circles out. I added one layer of felt in the mix, in order to add some body to the fabric.


My friend, Francine, from Las Colchas, shared her idea of  having little projects at hand. I liked the idea of having things ready to work on while I am watching TV or listening to audio books. I prepared some embroidery projects and have all the materials for the projects in separate pouches. I took one of these to South Padre last week, so I would have something to relax with at night. I think I am going to make some Pin Pouches prepared for Wabi-Sabi Sunday. I will be seeing Nancy this month, and I hope to get some more ideas and tips on making fabric flowers.

Remnant Sunday

It is a rainy Sunday, so I have been fluttering around in my sewing room. I had enough remnants from the Alexander Henry Sewing Woe fabric, so I made two zippered pouches.
 
I think I will spend some time organizing my remnant bins. I have been cutting pieces to make a Sourdough Scrappy Quilt like the one Mary posted in Zippy QuiltsThanks, Mary.

Someday

For some time now, I have been wanting to make something out of clay. I have not worked with clay since my high school years…eons ago. There is a clay studio that I drive past quite often. Every time I passed this studio, I would tell myself, “Someday…”.
Today was the day.
Sunin Clay Studio was the perfect place for me to brush up on my old skills. I had a two-hour session today, getting re-acquainted with the ins and outs of working with clay. I started with the pinch clay technique. My first product was a bowl, that turned out rather boring. I was just trying to get the feel of working with the clay.
Then, I started to have fun. I made this baby elephant. It makes me smile. I will finish working on it, and begin other projects next Saturday.
I am so glad that I finally acted on my “Someday”.

I know the trunk is a bit large, but she will grow into it!😉

A Meemaw South Padre Island Adventure

My Meemaw friends and I just returned from a great road trip to South Padre Island. Our goal was to visit the South Padre Island Birding and Nature Center, and the Turtle Rescue. One of the Meemaws could not make the trip, so we took her with us in the form of Flat Kaye. This is based on the adventure stories of Flat Stanley. It was fun documenting our trip with Flat Kaye. I did not get to document the 15 minutes we were locked outside on the top of the five story observation tower. We were too busy trying to get someone to come rescue us.
We saw 35 different species of birds on a super windy, and very cold day. We even got to see an Osprey dive and catch a fish, and then watch him fly up to the top of the water tower to enjoy his catch.
The turtle rescue was my favorite.These beautiful creatures stole my heart.
We are planning a return trip for next year.

Flat Kaye

An enjoyable book and activity in my classroom, was Flat Stanley. The children had so much fun taking Flat Stanley on adventures. They would also send him to friends and relatives to take on journeys and visit different places. It was a great way to learn about other cities, states, and places.
My Meemaw friends and I are preparing for a trip to South Padre Island. We are going to visit bird sanctuaries and sea turtle rescues. One of the Meemaws will not be able to go on this trip. I did not want her to miss out on our fun, so I made a Flat Kaye doll.
I drew the doll on muslin and backed it with double-sided Bosal foam and felt. After sewing on the doll outline, I used pinking shears to cut close to the outline. Then I used acrylic paint and a fabric medium to add color. My plan is to include Flat Kaye in the photos we take on our trip. I guess I am still in teacher-mode and I feel the need to plan fun activities for my friends. 😊
 

Sewing Tote Bag

The other day, I read a post on Zippy Quilts. Mary posted a bag she made using a Kraft-Tex base. She provided the bag tutorial link from Bijou Lovely. I liked the bag pattern, and the bird fabric Mary used was beautiful. I also liked the Alexander Henry fabric, Sewing Woes. The fabric reminded me of the romance comics that my older sister used to read…and hide from me.
I decided to make the bag a bit larger than the pattern, mainly because I wanted to showcase more of the fabric. This size will also come in handy for carrying my stuff whenever I attend craft days with my friends. I added pockets to the inside lining.
I wanted the bag to stand on its own, so I used Bosal one-sided fusible foam. I have enough scraps to make other small projects.


Pockets